Sunday, July 18, 2010

Online Privacy and Security

The information provided with this topic is useful for everyone, regardless of age. Safeguarding personal information (by not sharing private details for all to see online) and password security are both vitally important aspects of social networking. McAfee's suggestion for families to sit down and chat about safe internet use is a good starting point. McAfee's site has some useful information for parents to share with their children and it would be a good idea for families to have regular meeting on this topic as ongoing reminders, and to keep inline with the age and stage of their children as well as the changes in the technology.

Apart from looking after their card and keeping passwords secure, the most important advice we can give our patrons using the library's online facilities, is to remember to log off after a session. Others can jump on and abuse their Web account connection which is specifically for their use. Logging off also protects against unauthorized use of a patron's printing/photocopying dollars through their Pharos account. A patron at the library may have requested items from the OPAC or internet computers and forgotten to log off. No one wants the next user to have access to their personal details on "my info".

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Voyage of discovery

This journey of discovery has been a technological banquet. I had no idea what was under the Web 2.0 umbrella when I started. But like any feast you can only taste a little of everything, so that identifying my favourite discoveries amongst the exercises is impossible. Finally coming to grips with podcasts probably makes my favourite, but that may be because success makes you feel good. I enjoyed reading the other participants' blogs where I often found the hints I needed to help me backtrack and try the exercise again. I'm still frustrated by my limited technological knowledge I still have lots to learn, but surprisingly, I'm now much less afraid to experiment.

Social networking

Exploring MySpace has been interesting. Although the list of libraries using MySpace is aimed at teens the sites vary enormously. Some are very busy while others have nice clear screens. More important is the message that social networking is here to stay. Meredith Farkas (2006) in her article 'Libraries in social networking software' says that MySpace and Facebook are being used predominently by the 16 - 25 age group so seeing these websites being used effectively in library situations means that this section of the community is being catered for and is being encouraged to participate in ways previously unfamiliar in the library world. Recommending new books to the library acquisiions team takes on the new meaning when friends can question, comment, share and get ideas for their next read, next film (DVD), or next music (CD). To be vital, the site must be current and have constant contributors.

Monday, October 5, 2009


I've just been exploring
I searched 'book news' which brought up an interesting list. My favourites are 'Compulsive reader talks' with author interviews and readings, and 'Radiobook lounge' which also has author interviews and readings, as well as audio reviews and storycasts for kids and adults. The list is quite extensive for just this one heading. I'm looking forward to revisiting the site and investigating further topics.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Bebo - Facebook

I didn't find the Auckland City libraries Bebo site easy to negotiate. The Rotorua public library Bebo site was clearer and for me, more informative and appealing. The idea of using these social networkign sites in the library situation is useful and would be a good way of finding out what our participating patrons like or don't like, in the context of services, collection content, and even ease of access to our subscription databases. It could be used for survey purposes. The trick would be how to achieve an across the spectrum sample response, which is a fair representation of the whole of our library community, in terms of age, race, gender and cultures. Even if it's only within the computer-literate clientele, a survey of this sort could be of use to identify where improvements could be made to existing services.

Friday, October 2, 2009


I've had a good scout around google books and found and read some of my all-time favourite Shakespeare play, Twelfth Night What you will. It's not a relaxing way to read, at a computer. But it's convenient to know it's there to browse through. I like the way you can choose a genre from the list and the book selection changes giving a visual option to choose from. I had a good read of the beginning of a Nora Roberts book from the romance selection. I've never read one of her books. This is a good way to see if you like an author's writing style. Just one more way to get ideas for your next read. I can't see myself doing more than just dipping. Have to be careful not to get too engrossed in a book, or many hours later I may find myself cross and cross-eyed from reading the screen.